Everyday Moments-(#SOL-2021)

8-06-2021

On the 3rd we read in the newspapers that Southwest monsoon had touched Kerala, the state to our south. We would get rains within a week. We were surprised when it rained heavily on the 3rd and 4th. How could we get the rains so soon? We learnt that it was due to a depression in the sea. On the 4th morning, we heard a big sound from behind our house. There was a landslide. Then on 6th morning we heard many people talking outside. We went to the back yard and saw all the retaining walls had been retained by landslides. So much destruction of the environment and 5th June was World Environment day !

Today I was reading in the newspaper about the Sunderbans, home to mangroves. I have never been there but I have read a fascinating book about it, The Hungry Tide by Amitav Ghosh. On May 26th a severe cyclone caused great destruction there. There was so much destruction because people have destroyed the mangroves. Wonder where this will end?

I think our monsoon season has started today.  It has been raining a lot and there have been sunny moments. We hired Basavaraj to clean the garden. He has been cleaning the place. He comes from another part of our state. The lockdown has been very difficult for him and his family. He and his wife are daily wage workers. He said many have gone back to their villages before lockdown started. There has not been much work. He said temples in our place have been feeding people. He and his family have lunch in a temple not far from their home. It felt good to hear that behind the scenes there so many are helping the less fortunate. This reminds me of all those people who like to tell the world about their good deeds.

King Yayati in the Mahabharata says, ‘After giving a gift I do not talk about it again and again. Neither do I have anger against the one who asks nor regret after giving. And what I give, I give happily.’ (The Mahabharata – An Inquiry in the human condition by Chaturvedi Badrinath )

Twin curses on Sundarbans | Deccan Herald

Amitav Ghosh : The Hungry Tide

https://amitavghosh.com/thehungrytide.html

By Lakshmi Bhat

I am a person who believes there is not enough darkness in the world to extinguish the light of a small candle. We live in a small place in South India. I love reading, blogging, stitching, traveling, photography, listening to people and many other things which make life so very nice and interesting. Blogging is a fun experience, it has brought me into contact with people in different parts of the world and it is good to read about their everyday life. In spite of the differences there is a sameness which is fascinating. I have learnt and am learning something everyday. I have learnt to write haikus. I enjoy combining the thought and the number of syllables. I have always read books and I was happy to write short fiction. I had thought I would not be able to do so. Stream of Consciousness and photo challenges are fun too. Yes, there is so much in life that is sad and that hurts us. Many a time I wonder why life is so unfair to so many. We all have problems in life but the problems of many seems unbearable. This makes me feel so helpless. It is not possible to help everyone but we can do our bit, we can do something to help some in whatever way we can. I used to go to the Home for the Mentally challenged in our campus twice a week. I have been going there since 2011. The members are an important part of my life. Covid-19 has made it difficult for me to go there regularly. Hopefully I will be able to go there again. There have been many challenges in life and we have faced them with a positive approach. Our grandson and granddaughter have made life so much more richer.

14 comments

  1. I am so sad to read of such devastation. It must be so hard to recover from these monsoon rains! Yes, it is a dreadfully challenging time, with both this lockdown and these environmental extremes. Thank you for sharing your story, giving me insight to this part of the world. I really like the quote by King Yayati. Be well.

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  2. Wow – I hope that the landslides cause the developers to rethink their plans. That’s awful.

    Thanks for the book suggestion (you always have the best ones!). I put it on hold at our library. It should arrive soon. I’m also curious about that part of India.

    I have a challenging relationship with kindness and sharing when one does good in the world. On the one hand, I think bragging is detrimental. However, back in 2012 I did a project to promote kindness by asking people to “pledge” to do an act of kindness to support a bike ride in much the same way that people pledge money to a charity. It worked really well but it didn’t work as well until I made the submission form anonymous. People were self-conscious. One of the things that happened as a result of that, though, was that I got connected to what I’d describe as the “kindness promotion community.” Many people are making it their life’s work to promote being kind and helpful. We had lots of discussions about whether to talk about what we do to help or not. In my opinion, there are a few good reasons to talk about it. The first is that I think many people justify their own selfish behaviour by thinking “Well, society is cruel, nobody helps anyway.” This is toxic on two levels. One level is that it poisons the person who thinks the world is worse than it is making them feel bad about the world’s situation. The second is that others miss out on help because of their cynicism. The other thing that sharing kind acts can do is to inspire others to do their own. Sometimes people don’t know how they can help. Sometimes it just doesn’t occur to people. I remember as part of that project I would do “blitzes” where on one day participants around the world would do a particular act of kindness (buy a coffee for someone, send a letter of gratitude, phone a potentially lonely friend) and the feedback built on itself. One person would say how good it felt and another person would try it based on that feedback.

    So for me, I think it’s important to share the good we’re doing in the world. Not in a self-aggrandizing way, but in a humble way that encourages others to do the same.

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    1. Yes, in the humble way and it would be better if others talked about a person’s kindness. What I don’t like is when people take photos of their charity work. Maybe in these days of mobile phones, people want to record what they are doing.

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  3. I love the way that you view all of the difficulties right now through a lens of helpfulness and concern for others. It really is about trying to do our best for each other without expecting anything in return. Your quote by King Yayati sums it up quite nicely. I enjoyed reading your post!

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  4. Destruction by nature can’t be stopped; destruction by man must be stopped. I am always sad when I see lands being cleared for the good of man, translated to mean to line someone’s pockets, causing animals to be displaced because their homes are gone.
    To me, people who continually brag about the good they do are not doing good for the right reason.

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  5. Landslides weren’t too difficult to forecast. Why can’t people work in harmony with the landscape rather than feeling the need to flatten it first?

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  6. Lakshmi, wow. So much destruction. The earth has tried to warn us, hasn’t she? But we keep tempting and helping destroy it by cutting the mangroves, as just one example of a myriad.

    I always appreciate your wisdom shared from many sources. This quote today is meaningful to me, and a good reminder for how to give: ‘After giving a gift I do not talk about it again and again…what I give, I give happily.’

    Thank you!

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  7. I visited The Sunderbans when I visited Kolkata many years ago, and indeed set part of my book MAGNETITE which was never delivered to you, there.

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    1. A great regret . If I had been in India maybe I would have got it. I liked your story very much. You had shared each chapter or chapters and I waited for it.

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  8. Lakshmi, I am so sorry to hear of the environmental devastation you experienced. Life is so fragile and uncertain. Hearing stories of your surroundings is difficult because I feel for your people and land. There are so many trials in life that we must be grateful for living.

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  9. What happened behind your home was exactly what happened where I used to live. Arrogance seems to ride herd over caution when it comes to development. But the dirt doesn’t care whether you want to build where you shouldn’t. It always wins, and in this case slides.

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